With I/O 2018 kicking off in under a month, Google has added new sessions, office hours, and other events to the schedule. New entires hint at “exciting” Google Photos updates, the launch of the .app domain, and more.

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The full I/O schedule won’t be available until the main Google Keynote on Tuesday, May 8th ends. However, the company has added a number of new additions, along with times and location, so that attendees can begin planning out their conference.

Meanwhile, Google is adding new Keynote Sessions that “take a broader look at how the technology we build can impact the world around us.” Topics include health, machine learning, and accessibility.

Google Photos

Interestingly, Google Photos — for the first time — will have a session on the second day of I/O. The description notes that the team will “preview some existing updates to Google Photos.” Given the focus of I/O, it’s possible that the service will add some sort of developer platform this year that allows other to build on images. Google Photos notably launched at I/O 2015 with the product getting stage time in subsequent years.

However, it’s also possible that Google will just demo new features announced at the main keynote. The team will also be hosting office hours aimed at offering advice “if your product handles lots of user photos and you’re looking for technical or product advice from the Photos team.”

.app domain

Google will also be introducing .app domain names that it purchased in 2015. The session description notes that it is “the web’s first secure-only open top-level domain (TLD) for mobile apps and developers”

This in-depth technical talk covers use cases for .app domain names, HTTP Strict Transport Security (HSTS), best practices for secure website development, and the unique security benefits of .app domains thanks to TLD-wide HSTS.

“Build interactive results for Google Search”

Google Search has a number of useful features for certain queries like the weather and hotel lookup, as well as tools like a random number generator or a metronome. These are all first-party, but one session hints at Android apps possibly gaining some sort of access to this space in the Google app.

From the description, “interactive result suggestions” appear to be an app’s “content and actions.” One purely speculative possibility is that users will be able to access relevant parts of an Android app right from Search results. Additionally, it seems vaguely reminiscent of third-party Google Now cards.


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